Worthing boy banned from netball tournament reaches national final with his article about sexism

Benjamin Waterer, 13, is a finalist in the national STABILO Young Journalist of the Year competition
Benjamin Waterer, 13, is a finalist in the national STABILO Young Journalist of the Year competition

When Worthing student Benjamin Waterer was banned from the school netball tournament, he decided to write an article to raise awareness of sexism.

Putting his feelings into words paid off for the 13-year-old, as his piece has earned him a place in the finals of the national STABILO Young Journalist of the Year competition.

Benjamin, who attends Bohunt School Worthing, is one of ten students to be shortlisted for the prize.

Mum Emma Waterer said: “I am really proud of Benjamin for using his writer’s voice to highlight this issue as he was very upset when he found out he was excluded from playing in the netball tournament for being a boy.

“He has always enjoyed writing and this is a great opportunity for him to see his words in print.”

Benjamin was chosen by a panel of judges from hundreds of entries after he submitted his article about sexism to the competition. The overall winner will be announced in October.

Benjamin said: “I have witnessed the subject of my article many times but I struggled to see what I could do about it until this opportunity came up.

“I have always loved reading and writing and I hope that this competition will encourage others to read and write more.”

The annual writing competition aims to find the best young writing talent in Britain.

Vanya Hunter, marketing manager at STABILO, said: “The talent of our young journalists surprises us every year. It is such a joy to read the children’s work and extremely difficult to whittle it down to just ten finalists.

“The standard was the highest it has ever been. There were some truly inspiring articles and stories, with the environment being the most popular subject. We hope that everyone continues to write even if they didn’t make it as a finalist.”

Benjamin previously attended Thomas A’Becket Junior School in Tarring, where he was chairman of the school council and had the opportunity to act as head teacher for the day.